First of all, thanks to everyone who was so supportive about my dropping a big bomb then going on vacation. I didn't plan it that way. I wanted to give my employer time to pass the news along to the people who needed to know before I blogged about it. Everyone has been so supportive, and being that this life change is hard (you know, in an exciting way), it is nice to know people are rooting for me.
So clearly NYC is a good time even when you aren't with a couple people who have known you since you were 10 years old. We didn't waste too much time sleeping both because we wanted to hang out together and because there was so much we wanted to do.
Some lessons learned:
1. Rent is so out of control that it pays to stay put for years. The rent controlled apartment in NYC is crazy; I had no clue. It's clear why people stay in one place, even if it is crappy. One of Laura's friends has lived in the same townhouse since the 70s and is now paying a couple hundred a month in rent for a place across the street from a famous actress.
2. If you carry everyting you bought up five flights of stairs, I bed you'd buy less…and think twice about getting rid of anything. Laura has this dresser she thinks of getting rid of but a couple of days of up and down and I get why it's easy to not acquire so many posessions. Maybe that would be a good test for if you should buy something: would I carry this up five flights of stairs?
3. Our culture is driven by the relatively few and relatively rich. A walk down 5th Avenue and a comparitive look around at your fellow normal people can easily confirm that. So now I think, do I want some dress because I like it or because that chic looking woman looks fantastic in it? Good question…
4. Not everything is more expensive in a city. Cheaper produce and more expensive prepackaged crackers. Cheaper take out food, more expensive sit down menus. It seems variable, and not inherently more expensive like I thought.
5. Bringing snacks with me when traveling makes me less crazy. That $4 box of meal bars saved my butt several times this week from becoming Crazy Blood Sugar Lady…and buying expensive snacks.
6. Shameless promotion never hurts. Laura threw a party with friends. One of the attenders launched a blog last week and is already getting amazing traffic. What's his secret? "I make all my friends Facebook or Twitter my posts." Hmm, I never thought to ask. He urged me to be pushyer. Dude has a point, and blog hits to back it up.
7. Cheap entertainment will probably be your favorite part of your vacation. We played MASH while waiting for the Statten Island Ferry. We read the New York Post and laughed at the funny stories. I ate a pretzel in Central Park. We shared a Coke and personal stories in the Museum of Natural History cafe. These are the things we will remember more then anything.
8. Save money, sleep on an air mattress. I joked around before I left that I could see this trip turning into some touching coming of age story called "Once Upon An Air Mattress" or "An Air Mattress In Manhattan". To be honest, I can't think of a cheaper or more fun way to go on vacation then to visit friends.
So thanks to Laura for the hospitality and Robby for being a great travel buddy. And chances are, you also probably know someone in New York City. So visit if you can; you'll love it!